SAMe is reported to be extremely efficient in treating depression, joint pain due to osteoarthritis, and liver problems. SAM-e is the acronym of the scientific name, S-Adenosyl methionine, and the name of the supplement sold in North-America.
S-Adenosyl methionine was discovered by G.L. Cantoni in Italy, and soon was adopted in many countries as a supplement for treating joints, depression, and liver. According to research studies, SAM-e is as effective in reducing joints pain as any NSAIDs, including ibuprofen, naproxen, and celecoxib, (Celebrex). The major advantage of SAM-e is that it looks like it may even promote cartilage repair, however, the scientist are not sure about the mechanisms involved. Here is a more detailed article published by the Medical Center of University of Maryland, citing research about S-Adenosyl methionine.
SAM is naturally produced in our bodies, from methionine, one of the 9 essential amino acids for humans. Methionine cannot be synthesised in oubr bodies, hence it must be taken from foods. Methionine natural sources are meat, fish, and dairy products. Vegetarians are always in danger of not getting enough of this essential amino acid.
An Honest Review about SAMe
When i first read about SAMe, I almost discounted the information, however, after reading a bit about it on Wikipedia, I realized that it could be a great help for my health.
I started taking SAM-e to protect my liver, and to take care of my joints. Although I have only been taking it for 2 weeks I started to feel the effects. I have now a better digestion, and I sleep better, even if occasionally i go to sleep later than usual. My joints are most grateful for this supplement, as the pain has reduced a lot. I'll keep updating this with new data.
SAMe Supplement Benefits
SAM-e is effective in treating liver disease, arthritic pain, and depression.
Because S-Adenosyl methionine plays an important role in producing and breaking down brain chemicals, such as dopamine, serotonin, and melatonin, it is efficient in regulating the balance of these substances, with great results in treating depression.
S-Adenosyl methionine is a very effective anti-inflammatory, and studies have shown it to be as effective as well known NSAIDs. It has been speculated by some physicians that it not only reduces the pain, but it might also promote the cartilage repair.
There is enough scientific evidence to suggest that people with liver disease benefit from SAMe. The liver of the affected person, cannot synthesise S-Adenosyl methionine, hence there will be a major deficiency of it, resulting in liver failure. By taking SAMe, people with liver cirrhosis, improve their chances to survive. Taking the supplement will benefit even those with mild liver problems, because it will give the liver a boost, helping it regenerate faster.
Vitamin B and SAMe
My father was getting regularly B vitamin shots, and that helped a lot his overall health. Wait, what does vitamin B has to do with SAM? It actually has a lot to do with it. The two are in a tight connection, and they determine each-other. To be more exact Vitamin B12 and Vitamin B9, (also known as folic acid, or folate), are the two B vitamins in a direct relationship with S-Adenosyl methionine. A lack of either of the two, will determine a reduction of the SAMe levels in our body. In other words, you could increase your SAM levels only by taking B12, and B9. But that is true only if you have a deficiency of one, or both of the two. This was the case of my father.
On the other hand SAM metabolizes into homocysteine, and if the SAM levels are too high, and our bodies lack Vitamin B12 and B9, our blood will contain a high concentration of homocysteine, which is very dangerous for the cardiovascular system.
B12 vitamins, a great complement for SAM. The methylcobalamin form of vitamin B12 is the most bioavailable of the three forms, hence it will be absorbed into your system better.
Folic acid is the other B vitamin that is essential to efficiently metabolize methionine and S-adenosylmethionine. In combination with B12, they can boost the SAM production in your liver.
Sam-e Side Effects
If there is a deficiency in vitamin B6, B12, and B9, a high dose of SAM, can increase the levels of homocysteine in blood. Under normal circumstances, (enough B vitamins), the excess of homocysteine gets converted back to methionine, SAM, glutathione, and other substances. High levels of homocysteine are associated with atherosclerosis, heart attack, and liver problems.
SAMe will affect your sleep, and it is recommended to be taken in the morning, so its effects wear out during the day. It can also cause indigestion, and anxiety.
People often complain about the price of SAMe, and they look for cheaper alternatives. I, personally, don't think it is extremely expensive, but again, each family with its own budget...
There are really no alternatives for it, but taking the combo B12, B9, (folic acid), can increase the production in our bodies, if we have a deficiency of B vitamin.
Another alternative is taking more methionine, as a supplement, or from the diet. Methionine is an essential amino acid, used by our bodies to synthesise SAM. So theoretically, more methionine in our diet will result in an increase of S-Adenosyl methionine.
Nature Made SAMe is another great variant of the product, and people have reported great results after using it.
Nature Made is probably as popular as Doctor's Best, and you can't go wrong with either of the products.